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Originally uploaded by Lanimoo

So one of my goals this year was to walk the 8.15 mile Great Aloha Run. I signed up thinking I’d join in with some friends, but wound up doing it solo in 2:51:42! No bad for no training, right?  There’s a link to more pictures on my Flickr site if you click on the pic.  Enjoy!  **Warning, I even took pics of my HUGE blisters.**


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26Nov08

So I’ve been missing in action lately due to PCF activities and graduation last night (how sad we’re done!), not to mention my crazy work schedule, but I wanted to let you know that applications for the next class are due this FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28.  It’s not too late, but you best be getting your letters of recommedation done ASAP to make the deadline.  Remember, you can find the application here and any questions go to Charlyn Dote at dotec@hawaii.rr.com or 808-235-3733.  She’s truly the best ever, so be nice!  Good luck!


PCF 08 Fellow Elizabeth introduces her boss, David Carey from Outrigger, Keith Vieira from Starwood and Frank Haas from the UH TIM School (and no, that is not PCF 08 Tim Schools)

PCF 08 Fellow Elizabeth introduces her boss, David Carey from Outrigger, Keith Vieira from Starwood and Frank Haas from the UH TIM School (and no, that is not PCF 08 Tim Schools)


Speaking of Outrigger, we were next treated to a panel of noted hotel and travel industry icons in Hawaii including David Carey, CEO of Outrigger, Keith Vieira Senior VP and Dir. of Operations for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Hawaii and French Polynesia, and Frank Haas, who was once the chief marketing guy at the Hawaii Tourism Authority before leaving to teach future leaders of the tourism industry at the University of Hawaii’s Travel Industry Management school. It was interesting to hear their perspectives on where we are now, what they see as problems in the future and how they are planning for those challenges.

One that stuck with me was the issue of the housekeeping staff aging and a lack of replacements coming up the ranks. Turns out they are finding that most Gen Y kids don’t want to clean up after other people, regardless of the pay and benefits. Not something you would normally think about, right? I guess we just take it for granted that everyone needs a job and housekeeping is a tough but good one.


Bank of Hawaii PCFer Kevin Sakamoto introduces colleague and chief economist Paul Brewbaker

PCFer Kevin Sakamoto introduces Paul Brewbaker

**So I started this back a while ago and I got a bit busy with work and more PCF activities, so I’m sorry it’s taken so long!  You’ll note I’ve decided to break up our days into each section so you it won’t take me so long to do the posts and they’ll be shorter.  I hope you like the new format! — Amy

May brought a deeper look at all things Economic Development, with a special emphasis on our number one industry – Tourism! As a Fellow, you are often involved in helping plan the itinerary by calling on contacts you might have or arranging for speakers. Since my company is heavily involved in many areas of the economy, I was excited to help a few of our other Fellows (great job Elizabeth and Greg!) make Char’s life a little bit easier. It’s amazing how much coordination goes into one of these days. So many speakers, so many changes… 9 agenda drafts later and we locked it all in. The day before, I might add! No pressure, right?

First up was an early morning breakfast with Bank of Hawaii‘s chief economist Paul Brewbaker at the new Embassy Suites at the Waikiki Beach Walk courtesy of Outrigger Hotels & Resorts. If you haven’t seen Paul present his predictions, it’s always insightful and usually very entertaining and down to earth. I consider that a feat because some of that material can be pretty darn dry! Bottom line – we are NOT in a recession. Or at least we weren’t then. I’m not so sure about now, despite what the experts say…


From time to time we break from agenda and get to take a side excursion to look at something cool that affects our community. On May 9 the Fellows were invited to tour the US Navy’s Mercy before she began her journey as part of the Pacific Partnership bringing aid to underdeveloped countries in the Pacific region. Our group was comprised of current and alumni Fellows, so it was neat to mix and mingle with folks who’d been through the program already.

PCF Mercy Tour Group

PCF Mercy Tour Group - Yep, that's the ship behind us!

We met at the gate and were escorted in vans to the ship which was docked in Pearl Harbor. It was ENORMOUS! You can’t miss this huge white ship with the big red cross on the side – but I guess that’s what you get with a floating hospital. It truly was an exciting facility with full medical capabilities for surgery, testing and emergency care.
The tour started in the Ward Room with a briefing by Captain W.A. Kearns, Commodore and Captain James P. Rice, Mercy Medical Treatment Facility Commander about the mission, what it means for the places it will visit and how important it is to the US military and diplomatic relations.
Then we walked up to the bridge to see the controls and take a peek out the window at Pearl Harbor. You could see the Battleship Missouri Memorial and Arizona Memorial off the starboard (right) side. It was amazing to see it from that angle.

The Battleship Missouri and Arizona Memorials off the starboard side from the bridge.

The Battleship Missouri and Arizona Memorials off the starboard side from the bridge.

One of our tour guides was taking pictures of Flat Stanley for her niece’s class project as we journeyed around. I managed to capture one shot of her in action. I figure that kid’s project will be pretty darn cool with the journey ahead!

Afterwards we took a stroll on the deck and I got a clearer shot of the Missouri and the Arizona. Then we headed into the ship and toured all of the medical facilities. They have a full emergency room that has about 50 beds (if my memory serves me right)!

We saw their MRI scanner and took a tour of one of the operating rooms, which was super cool. They put them in the dead center of the ship to make them move as little as possible for surgeries. Still, all of the equipment is tethered down in case of high seas. Can you imagine going in for a complex surgery on a rocking ship? I give those doctors and nurses so much credit for keeping it going in tough conditions! Here are some more pictures to show you what we saw on the tour…

Mercy's Bridge with Flat Stanley at the controls and a few helpers who have worked on several missions.

Mercy's Bridge with Flat Stanley at the controls and a few helpers who have worked on several missions.

A view of the Battleship Missouri Memorial and the Arizona Memorial from the deck of the USN Mercy.

A view of the Battleship Missouri Memorial and the Arizona Memorial from the deck of the USN Mercy.

One of our guides shows off the 50 bed emergency/intake/trauma area on the USN Mercy.  It's huge!

One of our guides shows off the 50 bed emergency/intake/trauma area on the USN Mercy. It's huge!

Here's more of the trauma area.  Cool, huh?

Here's more of the trauma area. Cool, huh?

Yes, that's a fully functional MRI scanner on the ship!  How awesome that they have that capability in arms reach to treat those in need.

Yes, that's a fully functional MRI scanner on the ship! How awesome that they have capability in arms reach to treat those in need.

I was excited to see they had their own way of handling recycling.  Pretty tall brown bags, huh?

I was excited to see they had their own way of handling recycling. Pretty tall brown bags, huh?

Not the best shot of this poor guide with his eyes closed, but I loved the hanging monkey on the bunk next to his head!  He was explaining the sick bay modifications needed to create a children's ward with the comforts of home.

Not the best shot of this poor guide with his eyes closed, but I loved the hanging monkey on the bunk next to his head! He was explaining the sick bay modifications needed to create a children's ward with the comforts of home.

Speaking of the kid's area... Here's the playroom filled with toys, games and materials donated by the wonderful people of San Diego to aid the ship on its mission.

Speaking of the kid's area... Here's the playroom filled with toys, games and materials donated by the wonderful people of San Diego to aid the ship on its mission.

And thar she blows off the port (left) side of the harbor!  Such a monster ship with an incredible impact on people's lives.

And thar she blows off the port (left) side of the harbor! Such a monster ship with an incredible impact on people's lives.

Needless to say, but this was a very cool look at an awesome part of the US Military! If I get really good, I’ll post some of the pictures and/or PowerPoint updates we’ve been receiving that document the progress of the ship’s work along the way.


Sorry it’s been awhile since my last post! I started writing this a few weeks ago, but it’s taken a bit to finish.

The end of April brought the Fellows up close and personal with all things school for Education Day. This particular area is especially important to me since I grew up in the world of academics with a professor for a dad and most of my volunteer efforts are in this arena. I’m a PROUD public school – Go Waiakea Warriors – and University of Hawaii graduate. Must be a warrior thing, no

PCF listens to Senator Sakamoto, Superintendent Hamamoto and HSTA President Takabayashi talk about Hawaii's public school system.

PCF listens to Senator Sakamoto, Superintendent Hamamoto and HSTA President Takabayashi talk about Hawaii's public school system.

First up for the day was a panel on Hawaii’s public school system featuring DOE Superintendent Pat Hamamoto, Senator Norman Sakamoto and HSTA President Roger Takabayashi.

We learned about the challenges and benefits of running a statewide school system vs. each county managing its own. They talked about the weighted student formula which helps decide how much money each school gets relative to its student population – bottom line – not enough. And we discussed the teacher shortage and how it affects the student teacher ratio. All heavy topics, but very interesting discussion!

Next up was a panel featuring leaders from all over the University of Hawaii system including President David McClain, Manoa Chancellor Virginia Hinshaw, West Oahu Chancellor Gene Awakuni and John Morton, VP for the Community Colleges. As a graduate of UH-Manoa and the daughter of two UH-Hilo employees, it was interesting to listen to the issues that are top of mind like curricula, faculty recruitment and retention, facilities improvements, future growth.

Principal Gail Awakuni talks about Teach for America and how she manages the business of her school.

Principal Gail Awakuni talks about Teach for America and how she manages the business of her school.

Then we took a ride out to James Cambell High School for a tour and talk with Principal Gail Awakuni and several of the fantastic teachers from Teach for America that are working their magic on campus. We were treated to an amazing lunch prepared and served by the students who are learning about the business of food service. I wish I had a picture, because it looked like something you’d get at the Pineapple Room (which I love)! If you don’t know anything about Gail Awakuni, you have to get to know her. She’s a dynamo and she’s really figured out how to work the system to get what she needs to run her school the best she can for the kids and the teachers. It’s super impressive! We also got to see the learning centers like where they grow hydroponic lettuce for their food service as well as to sell to local restaurateurs.

Challenger CenterNext up was a trip to space… Well, not really space, but it sure seemed like it at some points! We visited an awesome little hidden local gem called the Challenger Center tucked away in the unassuming classrooms of Barbers Point Elementary School. The Challenger Center was set up in memory of the crew of the final Challenger Shuttle Mission who lost their lives in 1986. The crew included Christa McAuliffe, the first teacher in space, and Ellison Onizuka, a Hawaii-born and raised astronaut, so the Center’s mission to excite local kids through education about space exploration is especially close to home.

The Fellows are briefed about the mission ahead to see Comet Halley at the Challenger Center Hawaii

The Fellows are briefed about the mission to rendezvous with Comet Halley.

Our mission was to rendezvous with Comet Halley and test our STEM skills in the process. STEM is a buzz word in education these days and it stands for “Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.” After an initial briefing on the program and the mission, we were divided up into two groups. One went off to Mission Control and the other one went to the “Space Station” to set up and begin the mission.

The Space Station ISO crew getting instruction on what to do.

The Space Station ISO crew getting instruction on what to do.

The crew works hard in Mission Control to make sure the shuttle can launch safely.

The crew works hard in Mission Control to make sure the shuttle can launch safely.

I was tasked with counting the number of holes in pieces of metal by using a robot arm to maneuver the metal plates so I could look at them. It was a bit tricky to do, but it was fun! The clock is ticking and there’s a lot of distractions and procedures that fight for your attention. It really gives you an appreciation for what the astronauts have to do to get their work done and how they are a team with the folks back at Mission Control.

About an hour later we switched places and found out what our work in the Space Station did at Mission Control. Luckily my team was good at figuring out how to avoid an asteroid field and we were able to launch the shuttle safely to rendezvous with Comet Halley! Normally teachers are given training and they prepare the students in advance of their visit so they have a deeper understanding of their roles and what skills are being tested. It’s a fun way to incorporate the STEM skills in a practical lesson plan and I wish we’d gotten to do something like this when I was in school. Maybe I’d be better at math? Just kidding!

It was an action packed adventure of a day and it really showcased the job our education community is doing to ensure our local kids are getting the best education possible. It’s a tough job and I’m glad there are great people who are dedicated to fighting the battle on behalf of our kids.


So from time to time, the Fellows are fortunate to gain access to noteworthy folks who are in town for one reason or another to listen to their wisdom and learn. You never know who or when, but if you get the email or the call, it’s be there or be square. We got one of those emails in April inviting us to breakfast with former Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta, who was in town to testify about the proposed rail transit initiative.

The Fellows meet former Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta

The Pacific Century Fellows meet former Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta

We gathered at one of Honolulu’s best places for breakfast – Sam Choy’s Breakfast, Lunch & Crab – to listen to Secretary Mineta. Figuring we were in for a talk on transit, I know I was surprised when he instead spoke about his path to public service and the leadership skills he learned at a tender age from watching the challenges faced by his father during World War II.

He shared his experience in the internment camps of Wyoming and how he saw the effect on his family, especially his father, and their friends in the community. It was really fascinating to hear what their lives were like and how they coped. You hear about internment in school, but they don’t really go in depth on what happened during and after.

Mineta became a public servant in the 1960s, where he first served as a city councilman for San Jose and then got elected as the first Asian-American mayor in the country. He went on to the House of Representatives and then later was appointed the Transportation Secretary under President Bill Clinton, making him the first Asian-American in the Cabinet. He also has the distinction of being the longest running Transportation Director as well as the first to serve under both a Democrat and a Republican, when he was reappointed by President George W. Bush. I’m sure there’s something I’m forgetting, but the bottom line was that he’s a pretty incredible individual.

He encouraged our group to focus on the task at hand and do it the best we can, because if you are successful at what you are doing now, the right opportunities will reveal themselves when the time is right. He spoke about those who spend so much time looking ahead to what they want, that they forget to mind the present and trip up their careers. Mineta also told us to remember those below us, that we would not be leaders if it weren’t for their help, and to make sure we pull them up as we go to give them similar opportunities to achieve as we have thus far. Pretty smart guy, yeah? I know I was impressed.

Sadly, I had to leave early to catch a plane that day, so I didn’t get to hear the end of his talk but the other fellows said it was great! Perhaps one day I’ll get to hear him speak again soon.




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